TN Police accuse state BJP chief of 'diverting probe' in Oct 23 blast case, he asks 'why is CM Stalin silent?'

Updated on Oct 30, 2022 06:22 PM IST

Tamil Nadu BJP chief K Annamalai alleged the state police were warned of the October 23 blast by the Union home ministry, but the cops quashed it by calling it an “utter lie”.

Tamil Nadu Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President K Annamalai. (ANI Photo)
Tamil Nadu Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President K Annamalai. (ANI Photo)
By, New Delhi

The ongoing feud between the Tamil Nadu Police and state Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president K Annamalai over the October 23 blast incident in Coimbatore continued on Sunday. The saffron party leader responded to a state police statement, in which it asked Annamalai to “stop spreading rumours” regarding the handling of the case to defame them. Annamalai took to Twitter to share his responses, which were a series of questions, besides alleging the cops failed to keep track of the victim of the blast - who he claimed was an ISIS sympathiser.

The Tamil Nadu Police on Saturday issued a statement wherein they said there was no “delay in handing over the Coimbatore car cylinder blast case to the NIA” and also alleged that Annamalai is trying to divert the investigation.

Also Read | Tamil Nadu police recoveries bare Coimbatore bomber-Jihadist links

“When UAPA is invoked or if certain case sections fall under NIA Act 2008 the state government will immediately convey this to the Union government. Then according to the case within 15 days, the Union government can transfer the case to NIA. This is the law. But in practice, after getting an opinion from NIA, the Union government even takes months to take over the case. Till then only the state police will handle the case,” the police said in its statement.

The police also quashed allegations by the BJP chief that the Union home ministry had warned about the planned blast, calling it an “utter lie”. In the statement, the police said that the circular that Annamalai mentioned was a “very general” one, sent to all states and UTs with “no mention of Coimbatore”.

Also Read | Tamil Nadu govt delayed handover of probe into blast to NIA: Governor

In response, Annamalai on Sunday sought to know if Tamil Nadu Police chief was aware of a “special division” report that Jamesha Mubin, killed in the blast incident, was an “ISIS sympathiser”. In reference to this, the BJP leader posted information on Twitter, which he claimed were the police “special division” report.

Annamalai - a former IPS officer, also addressed the police' accusation that he was trying to divert the investigation, saying “we realise it is our responsibility to question the government as a constructive opposition and take the truth to the people”.

He further stated that it has been a week since the incident happened, and that the “chief minister (MK Stalin) is silent is known to all”. Annamalai also sought to know why Tamil Nadu electricity minister Senthil Balaji, who he said is completely unconnected with the “department” (home) has spoken about the matter instead of the CM. Stalin holds the home portfolio in the southern state.

Annamalai said that he has “highest respect for the hardworking brothers and sisters in Tamil Nadu Police”, but the DGP and ADGP (Int) of the state police “behave like an extension” of the ruling DMK.

“Will the police take action against DMK members who are working to divert this case?” the BJP leader tweeted along with his responses.

Status of the case

State police has so far arrested as many as six people in connection with the case, and have invoked the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). Reportedly, the nabbed individuals are associates of Mubin, who was charred to death in suspicious circumstances after an LPG cylinder inside the car he was driving exploded near a temple around 4am on October 23.

The NIA registered a case in the blast incident on Thursday (October 27), after receiving approval from home ministry to take over it the night before. The federal agency had questioned Mubin in 2019 for alleged terror links.

(With inputs from ANI and PTI)

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